|Esther Mancillas Davis works on the Donate Life Float for the 2017 Rose Parade in Pasadena, California.|
They were not only going to see the Rose Parade, but they were going there to actually work on the 4 floats that Paradiso Parade Floats designed. Esther, an AIFD and NM Master Florist, was one of 11 florist who was hired to go and work on the floats. There are also hundreds of volunteers that work on the floats. This year, Paradiso Parade Floats built floats for Donate Life, Ragu, UPS and BDK. This year marked the parades 128th year and included 96 entries, 42 of which were floats. There are 24 float awards and each of the 4 floats won an award. The theme of this year’s parade was “Echoes of Success” and the Donate Life Float was called “Teammates in Life” for which it won “The Theme Trophy” as is was the best presentation of the parade theme..
It was especially meaningful that Esther was able to work on the Donate Life Float. The Donate Life float featured a Catamaran as 24 transplant recipients paddled through a Hawaiian paradise. The sails of the craft included floragraphs of 60 donors to honor them and their decision to give life to others through organ donation. Living donors and recipients also walk along side of the float. Organ donation is a cause close to Esther’s heart, as her brother, Joe Mancillas, waited 4 years for a kidney transplant. Esther was able to dedicate a white rose in Joe’s memory and place it on the float. Esther volunteers her time and talents with The Ultimate Gift of Life Foundation, a Texas-New Mexico non-profit whose mission is to raise awareness about organ donation and to increase the number of registered organ donors. She chairs The Joe Mancillas Trees of Hope Festival which is an annual fund raiser for The Ultimate Gift of Life named in memory of her brother Joe. Continue reading